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AdSense policies: a beginner's guide

We hope that all publishers participating in AdSense have a long and successful partnership with Google. For that to happen, it’s important that you familiarise yourself with the AdSense programme policies. The more you know about our policies, the more likely it is that all sites and pages where you display Google ads will fully comply with these policies.

To get you started, we’ve highlighted some of the most important and commonly violated policies below. These simple rules aren't a comprehensive list of our policies, but following them will help keep your account in good standing.

Clicks and impressions

Our specialists carefully monitor clicks and impressions on Google ads, using both automated systems and human reviews, in order to protect your interests and those of our advertisers. We do this so that we can protect our advertisers from artificially inflated costs. Here are some ways you can help ensure that your sites provide the highest quality traffic possible.

  • Don't click on your own Google ads.
    If you'd like more information about one of the advertisers appearing on your site, please type the URL of the ad directly into your browser's address bar.
  • Don't ask anyone to click on your Google ads.
    Encouraging users to click your Google ads is strictly prohibited - whether directly or indirectly, on your own site, on third-party sites or via email. Users should always click Google ads because they're interested in the services being advertised, not to raise money for your site or for a cause, or to generate some sort of reward for themselves.
  • Choose the location for your ads carefully.
    Publishers should never use tricks or deceptive practices in order to trigger accidental clicks on ads. Make sure that your ads are well placed on your site away from interactive elements, do not mimic the surrounding content and are not placed under misleading headings.
    • Maintain adequate space between the ads and the page controls. For example, on a site with games, try to avoid placing ads too close to the game controls. We generally recommend a minimum distance of 150 pixels between the flash player and the ad.
    • Please don't place content ads on interstitial pages, game interfaces or sites dedicated to streaming videos. If you'd like to earn from your video-streaming or game interface by overlaying, in-stream, or interstitial placements, check out AdSense for video, AdSense for games or the YouTube Partner Programme.
  • Be aware of how your site is promoted.
    Publishers need to be very careful when purchasing traffic or setting up ad campaigns with third parties. Before contracting with any ad network, you should ensure that they will never display your site in pop-ups or as a result of the actions of any software applications. Please also bear in mind that publishers using online advertising of any kind must comply with Google's Landing Page Quality Guidelines.
  • Use Google Analytics.
    If you're not using Google Analytics yet, we encourage you to install it to better understand and optimise your site traffic. Knowing where your traffic comes from goes a long way in getting the most from your site. Learn more about Analytics on their site. Or, watch helpful videos on the Analytics YouTube channel.

Content guidelines

Publishers are responsible for the content on every page displaying their ads, even if the content was created by someone else, such as on sites with user-generated content.

  • Content restrictions apply to pages/sites displaying Google ads.
    Google ads may not be displayed alongside any type of content prohibited by our programme policies and the Google Publisher Policies. It's your responsibility to ensure that all of your pages adhere to these policies.
  • Create sites with unique and relevant content.
    Google will take action against domains that don’t add any value to users. Familiarising yourself with Google's Webmaster Guidelines will introduce you to some best practices of successful publishers, including:
    • Focus on relevant and concise content, since placing excessive, repetitive or irrelevant keywords in the content or code of web pages will not be allowed.
    • Avoid using hidden text or hidden links within your site’s web pages.

Ad implementation

Once the code has been created in your account, it shouldn’t be altered or placed anywhere that violates our ad placement policies such as in pop-ups, in software or on sites that mimic Google.
  • Don't tamper with the AdSense code.
    Once you've generated your code, we ask that you do not alter any portion of the code or change the layout, behaviour, targeting or delivery of ads for any reason, unless you're specifically authorised to do so by Google.
  • Don't use pop-up prompts or automatic software installations.
    Google is dedicated to improving the user experience on the Internet, and promoting responsible software principles is part of that effort. Sites showing Google ads may not prompt users to install software on their machines. Publishers must also not attempt to change users' browser home pages automatically or via pop-up prompts.
  • Respect Google trademarks.
    Framing or mimicking Google pages is strictly prohibited by our Guidelines for Use of Google Brand Features. In addition, publishers may not use any Google Brand Features such as Google trademarks, logos, web pages or screenshots, without prior consent from Google.

Disabled ads or account:

In the event that we ever disable ads to either your site or to your account, the only way to get your ads re-enabled is to carefully read the notification email and to be responsive to our requests.

  • Be responsive.
    In case we ever need to contact you about your account, make sure that you keep the email address associated with your account up to date. Publishers are asked to carefully read emails sent by the AdSense team and to be responsive to our requests. However, being responsive does not mean that you need to write in to us. If we notify you about problems on one site, please also take the time to clean up any other pages or sites to ensure that your entire network of sites complies with all AdSense policies.
We constantly review publishers for compliance with AdSense programme policies and rules noted above. If you believe a site showing ads is in violation of these policies, please let us know.
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